Should your disposal suddenly cease to work, check its overload protection. A red button on the bottom of the disposal trips when the disposal becomes jammed or overloaded to prevent damage and motor burnout. Unplug the disposal, push the button and remove the jam. Some high-end models can sense a jam and will automatically reverse the direction of the blades.
Your garbage disposer is not draining, has water leaks, creates weird noises, or has horrible odors? Troubleshoot your Faulty Disposer. If you are experiencing garbage disposal problems, you will find solutions on our checklist below to help you repair it. Before going out and spending a few hundred dollars on a new one, troubleshoot your existing sink garbage disposer to find the problem.
In the event that you do not have a grounded outlet to power the garbage disposal, you will need to install one. Adding a grounded outlet may cost as little as $5 when existing electrical wiring is placed a short distance away, plus an additional $75 for the electrician's labor. If a new grounded outlet needs to be added and electrical wiring does not yet exist, it will likely cost around $90, depending on labor and parts. If your project requires the addition of a new switch and wire, plan to spend an average of $5 to $10 on materials, plus about 30 minutes of labor at an average cost of $75 an hour.
Waste disposal units may jam, but can usually be cleared either by forcing the turntable round from above or by turning the motor using a hex-key wrench inserted into the motor shaft from below.[25] Especially hard objects accidentally or deliberately introduced, such as metal cutlery, can damage the waste disposal unit and become damaged themselves, although recent advances, such as swivel impellers, have been made to minimize such damage.[citation needed] More problematic are drain blockages caused by shredded waste that is fibrous, e.g., artichoke leaves, or starchy, e.g., potato peelings.
I found a vertical crack, about 1 inch long, along the upper part of the disposal housing. The unit, an insinkerator badger 9, is from 2010. When water goes through the unit, a small amount will drip. The amount of water is actually quite limited, even when using lots of water to wash dishes. The unit is obviously old, but seems to work fine otherwise. What are your recommendations? Replace? or just catch the dripping water (1 table spoon per day).
At one point, I did have a leak that I eventually determined was due to improper installation. (This was by the same "professional" plumber who reversed the hot and cold supply lines when installing a kitchen faucet. He just didn't connect the drain hose properly.) While investigating the issue, I called Waste King to inquire about possible in-home service or warranty replacement. I was blown away by their level of customer service: no waiting on hold, just an immediate connection to a person who really knew the product and was unexpectedly diligent in resolving my problem -- which, as it turns out, wasn't even their fault.

Garbage disposals are considered nearly essential for modern kitchens. Installed underneath the sink, they grind up food into particles that will easily flush down a drain. A common problem with garbage disposals is that they will become jammed if too much food is pushed into them or a foreign object falls inside. When jammed, the circuit breaker may trip, cutting the power to the unit. When that happens, it will appear that the garbage disposal motor has burned out even though that may not be the case.
Most people don’t think about the fact that garbage disposals are eco-friendly. By investing in a sink food disposer, you’ll be reducing the amount of trash that you leave on the curb for pickup. This means that less trash will be buried in your town’s local landfill. Conserving landfill space is a national concern, and it is one of multiple reasons why recycling is so important. Even though it might not seem like a lot to you, every conservation effort matters.
If the source is not a connection from above then your disposal needs to be replaced. Try cupping your hands around the very top under the sink while running water. The ring that seals the gasket turns clockwise to tighten. The only other repairable leak would be where the piping comes out the side. There can also be a smaller dishwasher drain hose above that.
Reason Why It May Leak: When the rubber gasket gets old it can develop a leak. Long periods of disuse when there is no water in the drain and garbage disposal can cause the gasket to dry up and leak. If you remove an older garbage disposer for any reason and then put it back it may require a new rubber gasket to get a watertight seal again. Also, if the gasket is not locked evenly on all three sides then it will leak.
With the garbage disposal shopping, I quickly learned that the big brands are Waste King and Sinkerator and that those were the two best places to start. After going over several models and two trips to two separate best buys (who, by the way, really need to amp up their customer service model) I cheated and had my mom choose one for me. Sue me. So she chose this particular brand, and wow—it works really well, I can’t believe how easy it makes ... full review
There is a contradiction among some of the brands. InSinkErator’s disposal instruction manual states, “Don’t grind large amounts of egg shells or fibrous materials like corn husks, artichokes, etc, to avoid possible drain blockage.” Whirlpool’s disposal instruction manual states, “designed to dispose of food wastes including bones, fruit and vegetable wastes, pits, egg shells and coffee grounds.”
Garbage disposal units have standard hook-ups that are present on all models from every manufacturer. They all have an inlet and an outlet and a dishwasher inlet on the side, and a disposal unit can leak in those areas. If the body of the unit is leaking, the unit must be replaced, but other leaks in a disposal unit can be repaired by a do-it-yourselfer who has basic skills.
Read the directions for your model before attempting a home repair. Most disposals have an electrical reset button, and a manual hex key for un-jamming. If the disposal stops working, its internal circuit breaker may have shut it off. Turn the switch definitely off, and try to pull out the hard object that may have jammed it. Then use the right-sized hex key to manually turn the rotor parts (usually directly under the unit in the center). If it turns, then push the reset button. It usually clicks in. Then, turn on the water and try the power, again.
The metal sink flange that sits directly inside the sink drain is typically sealed around the top with plumber’s putty (a clay-like sealant) and then secured from under the sink with bolts. If the plumber’s putty deteriorates, or the bolts loosen, the flange can no longer form a watertight seal between the sink drain and the disposal—which could cause a leak at the top of the unit.
While inspecting your unit, if you see leaking, you will need to equip yourself with a screwdriver and tighten up the clamp that’s holding the garbage disposal to the dishwasher. The smaller drain line is attached by screws. Tighten up these screws and if the gasket is worn, replace this too (Careful not to overtighten). You should be able to purchase gaskets at your local home improvement store for a fairly inexpensive price.
InSinkErator is a brand name that is well-known for their design and manufacturing of waste disposal systems and instant hot water dispensers. John Hammes founded the company in 1927 in Racine, Wisconsin, where their headquarters remain today. Hammes is credited with designing and producing the first “in sink” waste disposal system, and the InSinkErator is a play on the word “incinerator”. Currently, InSinkErator produces and markets garbage disposal systems under the Evolution and Badger Series brand names.

If your garbage disposal just won’t turn at all, then it’s very likely that the disposal has lost power. Your unit may have blown a circuit, or it could be unplugged. First, check the plug for your garbage disposal to ensure that it’s secure. Next, locate the reset button on the underside of the unit, and push it. If neither of these things fixes the problem, look inside your electrical panel for signs of a tripped circuit.
Lowe's offers garbage disposals like the InSinkErator Evolution and Badger garbage disposals in various horsepower options. Models with lower horsepower tend to become jammed easily. What if your garbage disposal jams? No problem. Simply locate the hex socket in the center of the underside of the disposal. Grab a hex wrench, put it in the socket, and work it back and forth until you feel the blades loosen up. Once the blades are spinning freely, press the garbage disposal reset button. It's that easy.
×